As part of an annual nationwide count of the homeless conducted in January, nearly 100 is the number officially attached to Shawnee's homeless population.

As part of an annual nationwide count of the homeless conducted in January, nearly 100 is the number officially attached to Shawnee's homeless population.

Barbara Loudermilk, executive director of the Central Oklahoma Community Action Agency (COCAA), said a group of nonprofits and community service agencies recently went out and did a count of the homeless population in the area as part of a nationwide annual event.

“We counted in the City of Shawnee 94 homeless,” she said.

That same day she said Oklahoma City participated in the same event — counting 1,200 there.

“That was reportedly a 20-percent count,” she said. “They forecasted that to (actually) be five times that number.”

So, by that estimate, she said, “taking 94 and multiplying it by five, you're going to get about 470 (homeless) in the City of Shawnee and Pottawatomie County.”

Loudermilk said as sad as it is to report, that's the count that was seen and is something that will be addressed.

Local agencies responded with meals or activities during the nationwide Point in Time (PIT) count, which was Jan. 24.

To encourage the area's homeless be numbered, the Shawnee Senior Center served free breakfast, and Emmanuel Episcopal Church and Mission Shawnee served free lunches.

“The more accurate the count the better the need is reflected at the federal level where all funding to assist the homeless comes from,” Rayneta Manwarin,

community resource and development coordinator for COCAA, said.

“The funding is used to feed the homeless, shelter and rehouse the homeless among other things to assist them in becoming self-sufficient and stably housed.”